As trusted motorcycle accident lawyers in Georgia, we’ve helped countless injury victims secure the compensation they need to recover after a serious motorcycle crash. If you’ve been injured in a collision caused by someone else, contact us online to schedule a free consultation.
It’s no secret that in the event of a wreck, motorcyclists don’t always get a fair shake. Stereotyped as reckless and unsafe, these drivers are often discriminated against in accident reports and insurance investigations.
As personal injury and accident lawyers serving Georgia, this idea just doesn’t sit right with us. We believe that everyone, regardless of what type of vehicle they drive, has the right to an impartial assessment in the wake of a serious accident.
If you suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else, there’s a good chance you’re facing substantial losses. You may need extensive medical treatment, including surgeries and physical therapy, to fully recover. In the event of a catastrophic accident, a full recovery may not even be on the table.
At Joseph Williams Law, we do everything in our power to make sure you—the injury victim—doesn’t foot the bill for someone else’s careless actions. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about motorcycle accidents, why they happen and how a motorcycle accident lawyer may be your best option to secure compensation.
Are you drowning in medical debt after a serious accident caused by someone else? You may be eligible to receive compensation through a motorcycle accident lawsuit. Contact our law office at (912) 259-6548 to explore your options.
Motorcycle Accidents in Georgia
Motorcycles offer their riders a unique opportunity to take in the scenic views of our beautiful state highways. However, these vehicles are not without their downsides.
Whereas a car passenger may walk away from an accident unscathed, a motorcycle passenger involved in the same accident may not be able to walk at all. With nothing to shield them from other vehicles or to prevent them from being flung from their bikes, motorcyclists are vulnerable to any type of accident, no matter how minor.
Illustrating this reality are the following statistics, provided by the Georgia Department of Driver Services:
- Despite representing only two percent of registered vehicles, motorcyclists in Georgia are consistently overrepresented in road fatalities.
- In 2019, motorcyclists made up 11% of all road fatalities, as well as 22% of all driver fatalities, in Georgia.
- From 2017 to 2019, motorcyclist fatalities in Georgia increased by 22%.
The data is clear that even in non-fatal accidents, motorcycle drivers and passengers fare significantly worse than passengers traveling in other motor vehicles. With few physical barriers to keep them safe, any accident can result in severe injury and death.
Leading Causes of Motorcycle Wrecks
Practically any condition that can cause a car wreck can also cause a motorcycle accident. However, many motorcycle accidents are caused by one of the following hazards:
- Inclement weather
- Poorly maintained roads and highways
- Car doors, particularly when they are opened in a motorcyclist’s path
- Left turns and corner turns
- Illegal passing by cars, trucks and other vehicles
- Distracted driving
- Unsafe lane changes
- Distracted and impaired driving
- General lack of visibility
Remember: The same rear-end accident that the driver of an SUV might barely notice could send a motorcyclist flying from their bike. As a result, even seemingly minor accidents can cause them significant injuries and losses.
Determining Liability in Motorcycle Accidents
One of the first things that your motorcycle accident lawyer will do is help you determine fault. After investigating the circumstances of your accident and reviewing crucial evidence like the police report, eyewitness accounts and medical records, they will confirm who they believe to be the at-fault party.
In order to win your case, you will need to present compelling evidence that another party’s action or inaction caused your accident and subsequent injuries. In most cases, the at-fault party is another driver; however, it may also be a government entity, construction crew or any other party whose actions resulted in hazardous conditions.
How Much Is My Motorcycle Accident Case Worth?
It’s normal for injury victims to want to know how much they stand to gain before starting a potentially lengthy lawsuit. Although we wish we could give you a standard answer, the reality is that it will depend on the particular details of your case.
That being said, there are certain factors that affect how much compensation you can receive. These include the quality of your lawyer, strength of your evidence, extent of your injuries and the level of negligence displayed by the at-fault party.
When calculating your settlement, your attorney will likely include both economic and non-economic damages. Whereas economic damages refer to calculable financial losses, non-economic damages are intangible losses that evade a dollar amount. They may include unseen injuries such as emotional distress, pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.
In rare personal injury cases, the court may also award punitive damages. Whereas economic and non-economic damages are both types of compensatory damages (meant to compensate the victim), punitive damages are designed to punish the defendant and deter them from similar actions in the future. Courts typically reserve punitive damages for cases in which the defendant’s actions are particularly egregious, wanton or malicious.
10 Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Just like whiplash is a common injury associated with car accidents, certain injuries are more common among motorcyclists than among drivers of other vehicles. Although the type of injuries sustained vary greatly, they typically have one thing in common: increased severity.
Here are 10 of the most common motorcycle accident injuries:
- Road rash is a type of skin abrasion caused by being flown from a bike and skidding across pavement. It may sound like a superficial injury, but in reality, road rash can cause serious complications, including infection and sepsis.
- Burns may occur if a motorcycle’s gas tank spills or is damaged, and depending on severity, motorcycle burns can require extensive skin grafts and other treatments.
- Bone fractures, especially in femurs, forearms, shins and pelvis bones, are all common, especially if the driver was thrown from the motorcycle.
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are a type of head trauma that range from mild concussion to severe, irreversible brain damage.
- Foot and leg injuries are common among motorcyclists for the simple fact that they straddle a heavy machine between both legs. When the motorcycle tips over or crashes, it inevitably lands on whichever leg or foot rested on that side.
- Head and neck injuries, from brain damage to facial disfigurement, are unfortunately common in motorcycle wrecks—especially when drivers fail to wear helmets.
- Hand and arm injuries are extremely common among motorcycle injury victims, especially when they are thrown from the bikes. That’s because most people instinctively extend their arms in an attempt to break their fall.
- Muscle injuries can be seen in extreme cases of road rash but can also be caused by a variety of other injuries.
- Abdominal injuries, including lung lacerations and rib fractures, are commonly sustained by older motorcycle riders.
- Spinal injuries are among the most serious a person can sustain and may result in chronic pain, nerve damage, paralysis and even death.
Although it’s certainly possible for a motorcyclist to recover quickly from a serious accident, many of these injuries can require weeks and months of medical interventions and treatment. Others never fully heal, leaving riders permanently disabled.
Motorcycle Accident FAQs
If you’ve suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle accident, you probably have lots of questions. The best way to find clarity is by speaking with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer, but in the meantime, check out the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.
• What does “biker’s arm” mean?
Biker’s arm is a term used to describe nerve damage resulting from the reflexive tendency for motorcyclists to extend their arms in order to break their fall during an accident. It can result in muscle weakness, tingling and loss of control from the fingers to shoulder of the affected arm.
• Is it legal to sidesaddle a motorcycle?
It is illegal for a motorcycle driver or passenger to sidesaddle their vehicle when riding. Georgia law requires all passengers to face forward when riding a motorcycle.
• Can motorcyclists pass two cars between lanes?
In Georgia, motorcyclists must abide by the same traffic laws that apply to other vehicles. The law explicitly prohibits motorcycles from passing in the same lane as another vehicle.
• Who might be responsible for my motorcycle accident?
Similar to other personal injury cases, the at-fault party in a motorcycle accident is determined by a thorough investigation of the accident. They can include several parties, including another driver, multiple drivers, a government entity or other party, such as a construction company.
Joseph Williams Law: Trusted Motorcycle Accident Lawyers in Georgia
Too many motorcyclists choose not to pursue legal action because they believe they’ll be discriminated against and unable to secure compensation for their losses. Ironically, pursuing a motorcycle accident case may be the best means by which they can receive the type of settlement they deserve.
If you suffered serious injuries and other losses in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else, you shouldn’t have to foot the bill for your recovery. Contact our law office online to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our motorcycle accident specialists today.
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